From the “It’s a Small World” category comes this 1935 Hollywood Stars PCL baseball program. Demonstrating a high level of play in the first half of the 20th Century, the Pacific Coast League was practically considered another major league at a time when all of the MLB teams were located in St. Louis and eastward. The PCL’s best player of the early 1930s was without a doubt Joe DiMaggio. Older brother Vince DiMaggio was with the San Francisco Seals in 1932, when he talked manager Ike Caveney into giving an 18-year old Joe a shot late in the season. By 1935 the brothers were rivals with Joe leading the Seals and Vince orbiting as one of the Hollywood Stars.
As demonstrated by the printed rosters in the offered program, Joe and Vince went head to head in what had to be a late 1935 season game. Issued at Wrigley Field in Los Angeles, this rare PCL program shows Joe DiMaggio’s batting average as .398, the exact number he would finish the season with on the strength of 270 hits in 679 at bats during 172 games played (the mild West Coast weather allowed for longer seasons).
Though age-appropriate wear is evident in the form of two vertical folds, some light creases and a bit of fading on the top edge, this super tough 1935 Hollywood Stars scorecard program remains very pleasing with handsome graphics, vivid colors, bold text and a solid spine, to rate as (GD+). A back page “Weekly Schedule-Second Half” box at center shows dates for all PCL match-ups from 6/18 through 9/22, with the Seals visiting the Stars just once from 7/30-8/4. These two teams then met after the conclusion of the regular season for a best-of-seven championship series from 9/24-9/29, with LA home games on 9/27 and 9/29 (a double-header).
All starting position players for both teams have their batting averages printed next to their names, with all tallies very close to their regular season finishes. It’s possible their batting results for the games from the championship series were factored in with regular season totals and printed for the final two dates at LA. This scenario seems much more acceptable than the notion of Joe DiMaggio hitting .398 on 8/4 and finishing the regular season on 9/22 at .398 with such a large number of at bats in the mix. We know Joe was a model of consistency, but come on. We're going with this scorecard coming from the championship series.